Thursday, May 28, 2015

A Surprisng Watch

Many a times it has been said 'There's nothing like a good read'. This may hold true especially for fiction novels made into movies where the latter would have a hard time to stay true to the story. While one or two movies may have been said to even surpassed the mark of the writer, purist would vehemently argue and even deny such statements. The illiterate that I am, I do have the tendency to lean slightly with the purist. However...

Before I get to my story, I do have a confession to make: Ever since I left my last position and later, as a volunteer with webtv8, I have not been on the move to capture or write new topics, personal problems aside. Living more like a hermit although, surprisingly, hermit crabs are more sociable than thought to be, I've had very few good reads left, relying more on old ones which can, and does, give a deeper insight with each turn of the worn-out pages. As such, my writings on this blog, is getting to be more of an open diary of my life which I am pretty sure more than a soul or two would akin it to being illegible were the tapping of the keyboard a pen, and the electronic scriptures which visualise my thoughts, the ink. But a write is still a write even if it is a form of release. Reading this para again, I now feel lost. Don't take me too seriously.

'One Hundred Foot Journey' was a beautiful movie. I say this because I have yet to get hold of the hard copy, and reading online anything more than a few pages long is not my idea of a good time. So until I get my hands on the real thing, I will continue to say that 'OHFJ' was a good movie. Of course, just like anything else in this world, there were some flaws. For one, the character Helen Mirren played, crumbled too easily. The director should have focused and captured her bitterness a tad more so that when she does crumble, it would be a scene of humility that would evoke more compassion towards her by the viewers. The rest, you'll have to see or read it yourself.

Then from a trawl of good movies, some good, some bad...and yes, I think I'm watching just a wee bit more than I should, suddenly, come a movie with an unexpected storyline and one  that was not based on a book, but the idea from one. But before that, if you're into scifi drama, do watch 'Predestination'. I may be giving away too much but I find it to be good tkough somewhat in line with 'Source Code', 'Deja Vu',  'Edge of Tomorrow' and the entire 'Twilight Zone' series, and yet, standing on its own. My apology to anyone noticing the slight tease there but... no buts.

'A Man From Earth' is about 5 friends wanting to wish farewell to one but found themselves stuck in a mesmerising but provocative tale of a man who has been living for 14,000 years. It is not a film for scifi or action movie viewers. In fact, a quarter way through, I would imagine this film turned into a stunning play. Not that I am a fan of stage-plays but yes, it could. The dialogue was great and some lines found me laughing all by myself. Sadly no, it is not a comedy, not the way you think. But it can be viewed as one in a loony way simply because it affronts Judaism and Christianity - revealed halfway though. And what affronts the core belief of the 2 religions, affronts Islam, my religion. But watching the movie just made my belief stronger. I will not go on about the movie and leave it up to you to decide yourself. Enough said.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015


"When a stranger gets a thorn in his foot, he is wise to pluck it out. He is a fool to leave it and say 'I will keep this thorn to remind me the road upon which I have traveled' ", said Mbjene.
- When The Lions Feed / Wilbur Smith.

It was near noon. Even with the sun has yet to reach it's apex  the heat seemed higher than normal. Standing at the edge of a small field which is hemmed between a trunk road and a housing area, a man stood with his head bowed, his eyes looking at the ground yet seeing nothing. In his hands, he holds a black plastic bag - a trash bag, to be exact - the only thing he could find on a moment's notice.

I was still recovering from a bout of a vicious virus attack which forced me to sleep more than 20hours a day. It was not the best of times but it was certainly better than a week or two before when I could open my eyes for mere minutes and when all sense of time was lost as the body and mind seek the solace of the unconscious state. But the noise from the porch kept waking me and I forced myself to have a peek. At that point of time, I had stopped giving food to the stray cats; I couldn't.

A month prior, I had seen him at the rear of my neighbour's house and thought he was a fine tabby with a bushy tail. I even 'accidentally' sprayed water at him just to see his reaction. Just like any other cats who dislike water, he fled. That, was the end of it, I remember thinking. Now, he stand outside with his sister, I presume. From then on, the porch and him are almost inseparable.

Clad only in his sarong and white t-shirt, the man seemed numbed, looking at the ground where an elderly lady was digging a hole. The lady, had been digging at several places but found this patch to be the softest spot, in a field where concrete, bricks and even iron pipes lay strewn beneath the thin layer of earth and grass.

From the row of shop-houses, a stranger walked across the road to have a closer look. Perhaps the sight of an elderly Chinese lady with a middle-aged Malay man in the field under the hot sun aroused the stranger's curiosity.

One of the best thing I I loved about watching him is when each time I return home. Even as I slowly reverse the car into the porch, he would be prancing the width with his bushy tail wagging; the sight which somehow warms my inside.

Early in the acquaintance, with my mind still fuzzy and the walk shaky, I did not know what to call him. To his insistent mewing, I somehow said 'meoweh', sort of a mix between a Chinese word  'mew-ah' meaning 'what do you want?' or 'what is it?', and the cat language 'meow'. The latter, since I am not a Cat Whisperer, I am as clueless just as I am with the dialect of the Chinese word.

"Dia tangan pecah" the lady said to the stranger who now stand in the shadow of the nearest tree. The man looked up, opened one of his hands and said "Eczema". His fingers, clearly showed the ravages of eczema, with bruises and cuts all over.

[Eczema is a skin ailment which is caused by allergens which differs from one person to another, in form and the allergen itself. A 5yr old boy in Kuala Selangor, is unable to withstand the heat of the sun and has to constantly stay within an air-conditioned-cooled temperature, while a cook in Sg Buloh Hospital cannot stay long in the heat of the kitchen where she's working. Both, otherwise, would find their skin peeling. The middle-aged man here, however, has to watch his food just as I too.

Having first suffered my first bout some 30years ago, I was left without a skin on both my palms as well as my fingers. Sleep, would mean having to bandage each finger and palms separately and keeping them far apart to avoid my very own body heat which can become unbearable].

Nights would sometime see me sitting on the long bench near the porch where Meoweh would climb up to cuddle up on my lap. Like many cats, he loved being stroked and scratched under the chin.  Like many cats too, he dislike having his tail pulled or played with, something which I like to do with that tail being bushy and all. Sadly, with the current bout of eczema, I was unable to give him the loving he wants.

A fussy eater, he sometimes get on my nerves when he refuse the kibbles offered, even on occasions when I buy premium brands. Strangely, he would prefer the lower-end brands. It goes without saying, his favourites are fried fish and those sold in sachets.

Soon as the lady was done with the digging, the man put the bag gently in the ground.
"Kucing mati" the lady said, answering the stranger's inquisitive mind.
The man then put a fairly large broken concrete slab on top of the mound the lady had piled on the the body of the cat.

Meoweh, the fat, handsome, manja-addict, sometimes I would tease him; a thorn pulled but will always be remembered.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Keep The Donkey Alive

Unfortunately, there are no real wolves here in Malaysia. Only a particular group of donkeys with a dominant female and male sitting precariously up a minaret. They are there with the assistance of a jackass who is ever so determined to bring them down. How true then the Arab proverb I included several entries ago: He who brings a donkey up a minaret, must he himself bring it down.

Now, before anyone think this has got something to do with the situation in our country, let me just tell you, no, it does not. I am just in one of wicked moods to write a horror-fable, in hope of improving my English. Another, it might help to distract my mind from the going-ons which were I to write my angst, might have this blog of mine certified as triple x on the accounts of the expletives and other nasty words I may use. The writing too, would not go well with my struggle to reform myself from being barbaric against animals, donkeys in particular.

Coming back to my story, the jackass who helped the two donkeys there has admitted that he is a jackass. What, knowing donkeys being donkeys, defecates wherever they please and one of the two mentioned here have a string of records of the places he has done so before ascending the minaret. Yet, the jackass has the audacity to say that he thought this donkey was clean. Hmm...should I use the word 'idiocy' instead? Pardon me for asking out loud as this blog is the only place I can practice English Language.

In a land where humans live side by side with donkeys, the  latter have been known to take hunans in a roller-coaster ride of mole-hills while insisting that they, the donkeys, are there for the sake of humans.  Countless generations believed in them until one day, a group of people decided to look closer at the mole-hills and discovered donkey-manure instead. And try as this group of people did, their telling others were met with disbelief. The disbelief turn into anger, and anger into hatred against their kind till one by one, when they themselves began to lift the veil of lie, the pong of manure hit them hard in the face.

Meanwhile, the two donkeys up the minaret goes on with their merry way and disclaiming anything to do with all the manure, even the recent stench up the minaret. But the donkey population is running thin. Due to inbreeding and deaths, the remaining donkey are feeling the tremors surrounding the minaret and looking for ways to stop it and the barrage of the people who have began to gather together believing the word of the jackass that the two donkeys have to go.

Suddenly, a very small group of people begin voicing their concern. They believe even if the said two donkeys are chased out much like Frankenstein was, there would be other donkeys to replace them. So, it is best, they believe, that the people wait until in one given day, the people can rid the world of these donkeys and build a new one from then on.

* I have to think of the conclusion of the story but do like the way it is going.

By the way, I was thinking of adding a bit of spice. Perhaps the donkeys could have a serial killer squad, killing people who may cause problems for them. Perhaps, 3 ladies and even an entire village.